Deal of the day: refurbished Nikkor 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR lens for $15,000

Nikkor 800mm f5.6E FL ED VR lensRefurbished-Nikon-800mm-f5.6-lens-on-sale
Roberts Camera has listed a refurbished Nikkor 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR lens for $14,999.88 on eBay with 180 days USA warranty and free shipping (new lens price: $17,896.95). Few other refurbished listings:

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  • Killroy™

    I’ll take two please.

  • Ron Kockwell

    Instead of wasting resources developing exotic lenses like the 800/5.6 I think Nikon should make a 18-250 DX zoom. There is definitively some room between the 18-200 and the 18-300.

    • Mansgame

      Or a new V or J camera…maybe the Nikon VJJ.

      • Jorge

        hahahahaha I got that one

    • Sanim

      Not that much exotic. An 800 mm f/4 perhaps would be so.
      How about a 18-275.5 DX zoom?.

      • Jeff Hunter

        If they made the 800mm any faster it would probably double in weight!

      • jack ash

        yeah, an 800mm f/4 would have been sweet. Wouldn’t be nowhere near as large as the old Super Takumar 800mm f/4.

    • Global

      I don’t know how you can say they are missing an 18-250… If you look at the list, it wouldn’t make sense at all.

      18-35 II

      18-55 II
      18-140 (!!)
      18-200 II

      But they are clearly missing an 18-18, 18-20, 18-24, 18-28, 18-60, 18-70, 18-85, 18-90 Macro, 18-105 II, and 18-400.

      And please, Nikon, you KNOW how much we LOVE being limited to 18mm on the Wide End. Do NOT make even one of these lenses could begin at 16mm or 14mm! That would be incredibly weird and uneasy for any of us to accept. Afterall, why would DX shooters want to shoot wide?? That would be insane.

      (I just hope some day to see an 18-600 in my lifetime.)

      • kotozafy

        You forgot to mention the early (non-VR) 18-70 and the brand new 18-300 II.

      • Eric Duminil

        Great post.
        There are actually 4 different 18-55 😀

        AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED,
        AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II
        AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
        AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II

  • John doe

    Shoot!! I just bought a 2008 lexus IS350 with luxury package F sport exhaust intake cover 19″ wheels new tires with 320 hp navigation fully loaded for the same price!

    • fixit

      yeah, but does your lexus have VR?

      • John doe

        No VR! only traction control, stability control, ABS, parking sensor and backup cam! 😀

        • Jeff Hunter

          That’s the auto version of VR. Works pretty well too.

        • umeshrw

          But does it help in taking photos?
          P. S. I just realized that it does – if you can drive closer to the scene.

        • Mike D

          Lexus used to advertise that the platform is made from a composit of metal and dampening material that actually reduce vibration. Yes, it does have VR.

      • kotozafy

        1960’s Citroen DS 21 had VR suspension !!!

        • There are a couple of these, always parked on the same major street here. They’re awful pretty!

        • fixit

          Yes, it’s called hydropneumatic or independent suspension. I got a lot of those when I was in high school (we’re so faaaar out of topic we deserve to be exiled to Canon)

  • bob2

    Suddenly Leica pricing looks relatively normal….

    • episa

      Wait, maybe there is a “Hermes” version of the 800mm f/5.6 VR coming at a higher price… 🙂

  • reignoffire

    any news of d9300 or d400 or whatever they wish, admin?

    • No, it has been very slow since the last announcement – it’s that time if the year.

      • ano

        not sure to understand ‘it’s that time if the year’

        • Nikon usually does not announce any major products in spring and early summer, especially on a Photokina year.

  • AlphaTed

    Perfect for the V3 for the voyeur in me.

  • kotozafy

    This is a 3 in 1 tool : tete-lens, nightstick and shield.

  • Mansgame

    A lot of photographers claim that megapixels don’t matter but for nature photographers, a D800 and a $2700 400mm f/5.6 lens can give acceptable results on par with what this lens can deliver with say a D700. Of course pair this up with a D800 and you even more, but for people not wanting to spend $16,000 there extra megapixels do come in handy.

    • lord eels

      maybe, but wouldn’t you rather have 11fps and much better ISO? cropping a d800 destroys the SNR. it has great SNR assuming you don’t crop and plan on downsizing. if money is less of an object nothing will touch this lens on a d4s.

      • Jeff Hunter

        D800 cropping potential far exceeds D4s cropping potential. It’s one of the main advantages of using a D800. As far as FPS, depends on the subject matter. Still, 5 or 6 FPS was usually the top speed for pro gear back in the film days. Of course ISO is better with the D4s. There’s always tradeoffs.

        His point was regarding the expense involved owning the 800mm lens, which is a considerable issue for 99.9% of DSLR photographers.

        Expense withstanding, I really don’t want to lug that monster around, along with the heavy-duty tripod it requires. When it comes to super telephotos, a 300mm to 400mm with a teleconverter (cropped when necessary) will be more practical and get used more.

        • lord eels

          way to miss the point, numbskull. my post isn’t about comparing the “cropping potential” of 36mp vs 16mp. I am simply pointing out if you crop a higher ISO d800 image, you really suffer.

          and news flash, only stick-in-the-mud old grey bald photogs claim shortcomings are acceptable because “it was like that back in the film days”. that is a f-cking STUPID way to look at photography. shut your idiotic mouth.

          • mikeswitz

            Coming from someone who shoots for My Weekly Reader.

            • Jeff Hunter

              In his dreams!

          • groucher

            Calm down dear – you’ll bust a blood vessel.

          • Jeff Hunter

            It’s eels the Court Jester! Your incoherent rant is VERY FUNNY! Thanks for the laugh little boy! Keep it up!

            The ISO performance of the D4s vs. the D800 is only about a stop and a half better in favor of the D4s, regarding noise. “Destroys the SNR”, oh please.

            Now run along and learn how to shoot pictures that other people might find interesting to look at. That goal should keep you busy for the next 20 years, optimistically speaking!

            • lord eels

              the d4s is “only a stop and a half” better if you plan on downsizing the d800e 36mp to 18 or 16mp.

              at 100% it is several stops behind. which is essentially where you are heading with your crop deep into a d800 file. please think before you post.

            • Sleeper

              Rofl don’t waste your breath. These morons here can’t see shit other than mp count.


              These idiots don’t serve much purpose other than wasting oxygen.

          • kotozafy

            Sir, we’ll shut our mouth, but thanks to NR, we’ll keep on typing on our keyboard.

          • Mansgame

            I’ll take that bet. Cropping a D800 picture by half still has at least the same results than a D700 uncropped.

      • Mansgame

        D4s has much lower dynamic range than the D800. I’d rather even have the D610 sensor over the D4s sensor.

        • lord eels

          people who own d4s don’t need that DR. we don’t shoot landscapes, and we know how to expose/control light unlike the dx00 series amateurs. just saying.

          • mikeswitz

            Now, if you could just figure out where the shutter release is you’d be on your way…..

          • Allan Smith

            So as a professional you have just said all DX users don’t know what they are doing? Nice…

          • Mansgame

            The D4s sensor only makes sense in a D4s body with 11 FPS and where low light performance matters the most. People who use the D800 or MF rarely go above ISO 400 for landscape shots or studio work so they get every bit of that extra DR. Still, getting very nice ISO 6400 pictures on the D610 or D800 is nothing to sneeze at either.

            • lord eels

              but aren’t we talking about wildlife photography? stay on topic or silence your mouth.

            • mikeswitz

              Don’t you mean a 15 year old “pro”?

          • Esprit

            Okay, the point you made about the D800 looking like crap compared to D4/s when at high ISO and cropped was actually correct, despite everyone jumping on you.

            But this “point” is completely moronic. Do you even understand what dynamic range is or why it’s important? Because by your comment, it doesn’t sound like you do. Which is especially surprising because your former comment created the illusion of notable knowledge only to have it ripped away by this stupid one.

            • lord eels

              maybe I have something to teach even you, child. remember I’m the photo john tapper.

    • groucher

      That’s exactly why the 1 Series is so good for nature. Shove a 300mm lens on a V1 and you have 800mm equiv. and 60 fps for a minute fraction of the cost of a FF setup. 10mp is fine for A3 prints or display on a super HD telly.

    • saywhatuwill

      Just out of curiosity, what 400mm f/5.6 lens are you talking about? The 80-400 zoom? Please. I’d take a prime over the zoom any day.

  • doge

    I’m curious to see how many of these exotic lenses are sold. Outside of lens rental businesses and news organizations (if they even have photography staff on payroll), how many of these lenses actually get bought and used?

    • Spy Black

      Probably bought by the same guy that bought a 50mm f/1.4 Zeiss to take cat pictures to put on facebook.

      • doge

        True. But with the 800 he can get that subject isolation that Cat Fancy is looking for.

      • Birder

        No, this is for the guy that takes pictures of the pigeons in the zoo’s lake.

    • zorwick

      I have seen one in the Netherlands. An old hobby photographer had it, shooting birds.

      • Amir

        Shooting birds? A bird may think of aiming to be killed!
        When you mean birds,does it make sense shooting sparrows,or ostriches?

        • Jeff Hunter

          Ostriches are mean and aggressive. The further away the photographer, the safer he is.

      • fixit

        for that money, i can have my own aviary.

    • Brian

      I have one. Private use.

      • Jeff Hunter

        Cool! I added up the cost of every FX lens Nikon sells awhile back, just out of curiosity. It totaled over $90,000 to own a copy of each FX lens.

        • guest

          90k? Not even enough to buy a set of Summicron Cine lenses…

          • same guest

            Actually, I’m rather surprised it is so few $.

        • kotozafy

          Every camera company has to make this kind of lens, just as Yves Saint Laurent makes $150,000 woman dress.

    • Mansgame

      Those news organizations and rental places add up. This is what sets Nikon apart from the Sony and Pentaxes of the world. It’s not that you need a 800mm lens, but if you do, you know you can find one rather easily.

    • saywhatuwill

      I definitely would have used it with the lunar eclipse this past week. I’d probably use it for the upcoming ones too.

    • Allan Smith

      I have a 600F4 that doesn’t come out everyday but when it does come out, there is nothing else that will do the job.

      • Zebra

        ofc not, you have to leave rest in car

  • Big Al

    Pretty sure this was posted just over a week ago and we all agreed it was overpriced, no warranty etc…

    • Brian

      The 5 year warranty is worth the extra money in my opinion.

  • LikeNew

    Must be one attacked and broken by a bear, cleaned up and repainted.
    What a good deal!

  • Sam V


  • FDF

    Does it come with a free Sherpa?

    • Art

      You know …. I pack my camera gear all over Central and South America. You’ve touched on a sore spot of mine — really. When I travel, I have to take all my camera gear that I think I’ll need as I can’t run home to grab something I forgot. This makes for a pretty heavy camera bag. (About 50lbs — An F-Stop Satori that I swear by.) Nowadays, when I look at gear my biggest concern isn’t how much it costs but, how much does it weigh and how difficult will it be to pack around. So, a lens like this for me is a non-starter no matter how much I might need it or it makes me drool and makes me dream of taking on one of my adventures.

      • dude

        sounds Like You Should Go Mirrorless.

  • Ms.KrystalMeth

    This is a nice Pocket Lens..Whenever I show up with this lens in my pocket..everyone says…Is that a Lens in your pocket, or your happy to see me!

  • MyrddinWilt

    What does a ‘Nikon refurbish’ amount to on a lens like this?

    I suspect little more than sending it back to Nikon to have them check it over and recalibrate if necessary.

    • Jeff Hunter

      That’s a good question. I always wonder if these lenses ever sustain any noticeable or significant damage prior to being “refurbished”.

    • whisky

      i was told by a nikon technician, it’s bringing it back to good working order, and near new cosmetic appearance.

    • DMT

      This one was doubtless a loaner at the Olympics.

      • Sharp Practice

        They sell those as new………..
        No 600VRs for love nor money before the Bejing games, but 6 weeks or so afterwards all the dealers had them but the serial numbers were all over the shop.
        Go figure.

    • Guest

      To Nikon, refurbished means taking a returned product, putting it on a shelf, and shipping it to you.

      I’ve received a refurbished lens with fingerprint in the rear element and an old style rear lens cap (when it should’ve been a new style).

      No, they don’t even open the box to look at the lens.

      • I don’t think that’s correct. Refurbished gear is sent back to Nikon where they clean it and inspect it. Screw ups can always happen.

        • Guest

          The lens I’ve got was received from Nikon directly. It was a replacement of a lens they’ve lost when they were servicing my original lens. The probability of successive screw up like this is low, which logically led me to think that this is a norm.

  • DMT

    Sold, guys…sorry.


  • This is what I’ve been waiting for. I ordered it today with the FT1 to put on my J3. Can’t wait!!

  • Andy Aungthwin

    It’s sad to see so many moaners come to NR to do nothing more than, uh…moan!

    Why don’t some of you start your own lens manufacturing company and see how long it takes you to come up with a lens collection like below.

  • rt-photography

    thank god for the price discount. now its within my budget.

  • Teodorico Morell

    Refurbished already? I wonder what quality control is in place for an 18K lens.

  • Morris

    it costs 100 dollars more than my budget, sorry

  • Mike D

    Don’t forget that Sigma still sells a 300-800 F5.6 that is tact sharp for about $8,000. It does not have VR but aren’t you supposed to turn off VR when using a tripod. I also use the zoom at the short end to find the subject and then zoom to the long end. Anyone who has used a very long telephoto can tell you what a challenge this can be. I’ve had one since 2004 and it still works like a champ. A little heavy though.

    • lord eels

      the AF is also pretty slow compared to 2013 ring type AFS

      • Mike D

        I believe the AFS is ring type inside the lens and it is fast enough to catch ducks flying at 60 MPH. Sometimes the lack of contrast from fast moving wings can be a problem. Hawks, egrets, eagles, etc are a piece of cake.

      • Mr Gladstone

        The 300-800mm optics are superb, but yes, the AF is a bit slow, but still on a par with the Nikon 200-400.

  • Arthur Tazo

    Nikon 18-300mm is cheaper. And better.

    • lord eels

      I know this is a joke. but got to love the “cheaper AND better” cry of the low budget amateurs. aka the sigma crowd. yeah right fans, that sigma 35mm is horrible at infinity and has crap bokeh.

      • Snarry

        What about the Sigma 50 1.4 which is more expensive than the Nikon 50 1.4? What would someone that owns that lens be?

        • lord eels

          a damn fool

  • lord eels

    well I want one

    • mikeswitz

      wait, aren’t you a “low budget amatuer”?

  • Jack

    Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II was the cheapest sharp
    zoom lens on the Nikon platter of lenses prior to introduction of the VR
    version. The world swore by its sharp performance for its meager price . Since now we have a more technologically advanced lens in the form of the 18-55mm VR
    , there will be many who would be raising doubts about the utility of
    this version. To them, let’s keep in mind- photography gear is more
    about the optics and less about the ease of use for the technology

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